Appendix E Descriptions of Achievement Levels for Basic, Proficient, and Advanced

Reading: 4th Graders

Basic Level (208)

Fourth-grade students performing at the basic level should demonstrate an understanding of the overall meaning of what they read. When reading text appropriate for 4th graders, they should be able to make relatively obvious connections between the text and their own experiences.

For example, when reading literary text, basic-level 4th-grade students should be able to tell what the story is generally about—providing details to support their understanding—and be able to connect aspects of the stories to their own experiences.

When reading informational text, basic-level 4th grades should be able to tell what the selection is generally about or identify the purpose for reading it; provide details to support their understanding; and connect ideas from the text to their background knowledge and experiences.

Proficient Level (238)

Fourth-grade students performing at the proficient level should be able to demonstrate an overall understanding of the text, providing inferential as well as literal information. When reading text appropriate to fourth grade, they should be able to extend the ideas in the text by making inferences, drawing conclusions, and making connections to their own experience. The connection between the text and what the student infers should be clear.

For example, when reading literary text, proficient-level 4th graders should be able to summarize the story, draw conclusions about the characters or plot, and recognize relationships such as cause and effect.

When reading informational text, proficient-level 4th-grade students should be able to summarize the information and identify the author's intent or purpose. They should be able to draw reasonable



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--> Appendix E Descriptions of Achievement Levels for Basic, Proficient, and Advanced Reading: 4th Graders Basic Level (208) Fourth-grade students performing at the basic level should demonstrate an understanding of the overall meaning of what they read. When reading text appropriate for 4th graders, they should be able to make relatively obvious connections between the text and their own experiences. For example, when reading literary text, basic-level 4th-grade students should be able to tell what the story is generally about—providing details to support their understanding—and be able to connect aspects of the stories to their own experiences. When reading informational text, basic-level 4th grades should be able to tell what the selection is generally about or identify the purpose for reading it; provide details to support their understanding; and connect ideas from the text to their background knowledge and experiences. Proficient Level (238) Fourth-grade students performing at the proficient level should be able to demonstrate an overall understanding of the text, providing inferential as well as literal information. When reading text appropriate to fourth grade, they should be able to extend the ideas in the text by making inferences, drawing conclusions, and making connections to their own experience. The connection between the text and what the student infers should be clear. For example, when reading literary text, proficient-level 4th graders should be able to summarize the story, draw conclusions about the characters or plot, and recognize relationships such as cause and effect. When reading informational text, proficient-level 4th-grade students should be able to summarize the information and identify the author's intent or purpose. They should be able to draw reasonable

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--> conclusions from the text, recognize relationships as cause and effect or similarities and differences, and identify the meaning of the selection's key concepts. Advanced Level (268) Fourth-grade students performing at the advanced level should be able to generalize about topics in the reading selection and demonstrate an awareness of how authors compose and use literary devices. When reading text appropriate to 4th grade, they should be able to judge texts critically and, in general, give thorough answers that indicate careful thought. For example, when reading literary text, advanced-level 4th-grade students should be able to make generalizations about the point of the story and extend its meaning by integrating personal experiences and other readings with the ideas suggested by the text. They should be able to identify literary devices such a figurative language. When reading informational text, advanced-level 4th graders should be able to explain the author's intent by using supporting material from the text. They should be able to make critical judgments of the form and content of the text and explain their judgments clearly. Mathematics: 8th Graders Basic Level (262) Eighth-grade students performing at the basic level should exhibit evidence of conceptual and procedural understanding in the five NAEP content strands. This level of performance signifies an understanding of arithmetic operations—including estimation—on whole numbers decimals, fractions, and percents. Eighth graders performing at the basic level should complete problems correctly with the help of structural prompts such as diagrams, charts, and graphs. They should be able to solve problems in all NAEP content strands through the appropriate selection and use of strategies and technological tools—including calculators, computers, and geometric shapes. Students at this level also should be able to use fundamental algebraic and informal geometric concepts in problem solving. As they approach the proficient level, students at the basic level should be able to determine which of the available data are necessary and sufficient for correct solutions and use them in problem solving. However, these 8th graders show limited skill in communicating mathematically. Proficient Level (299) Eighth-grade students performing at the proficient level should apply mathematical concepts and procedures consistently to complex problems in the five NAEP content strands. Eighth graders performing at the proficient level should be able to conjecture, defend their ideas, and give supporting examples. They should understand the connections between fractions, percents, decimals, and other mathematical topics such as algebra and functions. Students at this level are expected to have a thorough understanding of basic-level arithmetic operations—an understanding sufficient for problem solving in practical situations. Quantity and spatial relationships in problem solving and reasoning should be familiar to them, and they should be able to convey underlying reasoning skills beyond the level of arithmetic. They should be able to compare and contract mathematical ideas and generate their own examples. Those students should make inferences from data and

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--> graphs; apply properties of informal geometry; and accurately use the tools of technology. Students at this level should understand the process of gathering and organizing data and be able to calculate, evaluate, and communicate results within the domain of statistics and probability. Advanced Level (333) Eighth-grade students performing at the advanced level should be able to reach beyond the recognition, identification, and application of mathematical rules in order to generalize and synthesize concepts and principles in the five NAEP content strands. Eighth graders performing at the advanced level should be able to probe examples and counter-examples in order to shape generalizations from which they can develop models. Eighth graders performing at the advanced level should use number sense and geometric awareness to consider the reasonableness of an answer. They are expected to use abstract thinking to create unique problem-solving techniques and explain the reasoning processes underlying their conclusions.